Neqoktuk Art Studio is the first Tobique First Nation’s studio for local artwork

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The site consists of a gallery and gift shop with the work of local artists available to buy. Spearheaded by Shane Perley-Dutcher, the yurt is built with red cedar from British Columbia. This site’s goal is to promote the arts, culture and heritage of the community in northwestern New Brunswick.

Perley-Dutcher, councillor and visual artist stated:

“We want this to be a destination for creativity. We wanted people to come to see the artists at work.”

The Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency, Heritage Canada, and the local community have funded the project. Neqoktuk Art Studio is not just a place where art is made and presented, it also includes a marketplace where artists could run their shops.

Perley-Dutcher added:

“The whole idea was for the building itself to make you curious about what it was. And it’s been working since day one. People are just like, what’s going on here. If you can feel something when you go in there, [the] mission has been accomplished.”

Perley-Dutcher explained that the space is meant to provide visitors with an “authentic view” of his community.

He concluded:

“I want people to come here and start to think about, well, what is Indigenous art. People are just starting to learn about who Indigenous people are. And you know what? So are our people. Because they’ve had to forget about that for so long.”

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